Tesla to support Bluetooth controllers in upcoming update

By Gabe Rodriguez Morrison

Tesla's dynamic infotainment system includes a growing number of video games, some use the car's steering wheel, while others use the touchscreen or require an external controller.

It is evident that Tesla’s Infotainment system will eventually be capable of next-gen level gaming with the introduction of Tesla's latest infotainment unit, MCU 3. With "up to 10 teraflops of processing power" it is only a matter of time until highly detailed games can be played directly in the car.

Tesla Controller

Tesla's controller
Tesla's controller

Tesla revealed a proprietary wireless gaming controller at the Model S Plaid Delivery Event in June of 2021. The controller closely resembled a PS5 controller with two analog sticks, four directional buttons and four action buttons. The controller also resembles a steering wheel with a closed-loop design, likely to accommodate racing games.

Since the unveiling, we haven’t heard much about the proprietary controller until now. Tesla’s wireless gaming controller may be coming soon, suggests Javier Verdura, Tesla’s Director of Design. When asked in a recent Twitter conversation, if he would let us know before Tesla launches their own game controller, Verdura responded “Of Course!”

No further details have been provided by Tesla but this is a sign that a wireless gaming controller could be coming to the Tesla shop soon. You can expect it to connect via Bluetooth and likely cost somewhere between $50 and $80 USD.

Connect console controllers wirelessly

In the meantime, Tesla owners can still take advantage of the high-level gaming of the infotainment system using compatible wireless and wired controllers. Controllers like the PS4 and Xbox One controllers can only connect to a Tesla when connected via a USB cable.

Tesla Bluetooth support coming soon?
Tesla Bluetooth support coming soon?

However, some Teslas are now being delivered without the ability to transfer data from the front or rear USB ports, causing existing controllers to no longer work. The USB port in the glovebox is still capable of data transfer, but it's usually dedicated to a USB drive to be used with Tesla's Dashcam and Sentry Mode.

If your vehicle doesn't have USB ports that are capable of transfering data, you could use the USB port in the glovebox to connect a controller. However, Tesla doesn't believe this offers a good experience and it's why they're excluding games like Sonic from appearing in vehicles that do not have data capable USB ports.

This however, may be a temporary setback. In an unsubstantiated Reddit post, Tesla Service allegedly confirmed to a customer that “They [Tesla] are working on having controllers connect through Bluetooth in the vehicle and will release those games once they have the connectivity for the Bluetooth controllers ironed out.”

This seemingly points to Tesla introducing their own controller and/or allowing external controllers to connect via Bluetooth in the near future. You may soon be able to connect to your PS4 or Xbox One controller wirelessly to your Tesla.

Tesla owners can rest assured that it is only a matter of time before the proprietary wireless controller and/or console gaming controllers are able to wirelessly connect to Tesla's infotainment system.

Tesla's Supercharger Team Shakeup: Firings, Rehiring, and Future Prospects

By Karan Singh
Not a Tesla App

Tesla recently fired the entire Supercharger team, including Tesla’s head of charging – Rebecca Tinucci, after she pushed back on the extreme layoffs that took place right before the cut.

The Supercharger team consisted of over 500 employees, at least after the initial layoffs. In the following days and weeks, Tesla began to rehire some of the employees that it had fired.

Some Damage Done

In the immediate aftermath of the firing of the Supercharger team, contractors and site planners were left bewildered, with no contact from the Supercharger team that was responsible for payment, planning, and decision-making.

As this has played out, new Supercharger deployments have been reduced – stations that were already being built are being completed, but no new announcements have been made since t

It was dire news at the time - but it isn’t all bad.

Returning Employees

Now, more and more of the employees that were fired are beginning to return to Tesla, some of whom are announcing that they were asked to return to Tesla in their previous capacities.

George Bahadue, Senior Manager of Site Acquisition and Business Development commented on LinkedIn:

“Two weeks ago, I was asked to return to Tesla in my previous capacity heading up the business development and site acquisition for Tesla charging – I accepted.”

His reasoning to accept the position was a quote from Rebecca Tinucci:

“You work at Tesla because you hope to have at least a small impact on our collective future – aspirationally, to leave the world better for our children and grandchildren and their children and grandchildren – by accelerating the transition to sustainable energy. And that mission is too important to allow any distractions.”

New Stations Could be Coming Soon

With the restaffing of the Supercharger team, especially with the return of George Bahadue, we can expect that new Supercharger sites may be announced in the coming weeks, as the ripple effect from the layoffs begins to settle.

The rehiring of experienced staff suggests that Tesla and Elon Musk are still committed to the vision of maintaining and expanding its Supercharger network – the largest and most reliable charging network in North America, which is crucial for the mission to move the world to renewable energy.

Tesla Cuts Model Y Output in China – Economic Slowdown and Anticipated Project Juniper Launch

By Karan Singh
Not a Tesla App

Tesla recently cut Model Y output in China, according to data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), Tesla’s production of the Model Y in China experienced a decline of approximately 18% in March, and 33% in April, versus the same time last year.

Output Cuts

These output cuts can be attributed to Tesla’s recent decision to reduce production of the Model Y at Giga Shanghai by at least 20% from March to June 2024. This was attributed to an unnamed Spokesperson by Reuters last week.

This decision could be multifaceted – the primary reason being an economic slowdown in China as price wars continue to be waged between EV manufacturers, including Tesla. On the flipside, Tesla has continued its production of the updated 2024 Model 3, colloquially referred to as the Highland, with an increase of 10%.

Project Juniper?

The second reason for this slowdown could be the incoming arrival of the Model Y refresh – also known as Project Juniper. Tesla China has already introduced an updated Model Y with a unique cloth dash with similar ambient lighting as the Model 3.

The Model 3 Highland was also introduced in China before its introduction to other markets, including North America and Europe.

Juniper Upgrade Speculation

Not much has been seen about Project Juniper at this time, but we can expect a similar suite of upgrades that match the updated 2024 Model 3 Highland – including a new front fascia design, updated doors and dynamics, steering updates, improved control arms, ambient lighting, new seats, and improved range.

There is a continued expectation that Tesla is pushing back its Model Y refresh – its best-selling vehicle – to make a bigger splash. This could include newer features – like the Cybertruck’s Steer-by-Wire, front camera, or other upgrades and changes – like the lack of stalks on the rest of the Tesla line-up.

Tesla previously confirmed we’re not seeing the Juniper Y this year, this could be the time needed to retool and upgrade lines to prepare for its introduction sometime next year.

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